Tuesday, 5 January 2010

Do you shave or do you wax or do you even care?

I'd like to say that I'm not normally so shallow as to sit and ponder life's more mundane matters.

So here goes.

I'm not normally so shallow.

However, on occasion, even the deepest thinkers among us *cough*, enjoy chewing the cud about something as superficial as, erm, shaving our legs.

You see, it's not just me. I noticed a tweet the other day from @porridgebrain (aka Josie from Sleep is for the Weak) where she realised it was too cold to shave her legs because all she was doing was shaving off the top layer of her goosebumps.


I know exactly where you're coming from Josie. As I'm sure do most of us.

Except those who wax our legs, or just leave them to grow, heaven forbid.

But whatever our, er, under-trouser state of affairs, it's a topic which affects us all - even the husbands I'm sure, as they're spiked in the night by a bristly brillo pad masquerading as a leg.

But that of course leads to the eternal question.

Do you shave or do you wax, or do you even care?

So this is the thing. Before I had children I would enjoy my monthly wax, knowing that for three whole weeks, at least, my legs would be as smooth as, well, my just-waxed legs. I wanted to say as smooth as a baby's bottom, obviously, but at that moment in time I (a) hadn't ever touched a baby's bottom and (b) they were never really that smooth anyway.

And then I had my first child and after a few weeks of disposable knickers, rubber rings and the inevitable hirsute state of my legs, I decided that I'd better try to smarten myself up just a little.

So I booked a waxing appointment. And then I remembered that I now had a tiny baby who couldn't just be left at home. Hmmmmm. But that needn't be a burden, I thought - she sleeps in the pushchair most of the time - I'll just phone the salon and ask them for a ground floor room so I can leave the pushchair in the corner without waking her up.

Easy as pie.

Except, apparently, it wasn't.

"Oh no, we don't allow babies here," they informed me rather too matter-of-factly. "Health and safety you see."

"But she'll be asleep in the pushchair. She won't even move. I'll park her as far away from the hot wax as possible."

"No. I'm sorry, it against our Health and Safety policy."



So that was that. After 15 years, my monthly waxing sessions had come to an abrupt halt. I could have carried on at some point, of course, or even mixed-up some home-made concoction, but I didn't trust myself with a baby and hot wax (maybe they had a point) and besides, apart from it being much easier to shave, the moment you've picked up that razor, all the years of waxing benefits are undone in an instant.

And that's a fact.

However, like all good stories, of which this is one (obviously), there is a happy ending. Just bear with me for one more moment.

So, I was lying in the bath the other night, lamenting the fact that even with my 5-year-old Wilkinson Sword Lady Protector (in pink), my legs never seem to be smooth for more than two whole hours, when I spied my husband's Gillette Fusion Power Phenom thingy best a man can get, etc, etc, and I thought why not?

Why not indeed? Why should my legs be inferior to his cheeks?

So, of course, I tried.

And d'you know what?


That's all I'm saying.


Why had I never thought of it before?

I now have legs which are indeed as smooth as a baby's bottom and my husband has cheeks as prickly as a hedgehog's bottom and he can't quite work out why.

Hee hee.


Before I go just a quick, but huge apology to all my wonderful blogging friends who I haven't visited in a while. I've been struggling somewhat to keep my bah humbug attitude in check and have opted to completely ignore both Christmas and the New Year, at least in terms of writing about it, hoping that if I keep my head down I will be able to emerge in January to bright sunshine.

Snow anyone?


  1. I much prefer waxing, even with the pain and the ages it takes for hair to grow long enough to wax again--I hate the ingrown hairs and the bristles that come from shaving! And I hate shaving the goosebumps... ;)

  2. Ooh what I wouldn't give for a monthly MOT where I could plucked and waxed and groomed!

    Alas... I am left hacking at my legs in a cold shower and emerging with my purple skin looking like I've been in some kind of teen slash horror.


  3. What I would give to be able to take a razor to my legs some day, but unfortunately it makes my eczema flare up and we all know that's not pretty. I used to go down the monthly waxing route, but when my beautician returned to Brasil I invested in an epilator - all the pain without the inconvenience of having to get out to the salon.

  4. I have NEVER waxed in my life...I am too afraid! But I have a REAL issue with HAIR! I don't like to be hairy, thus, I shave every day. Even in winter. Even if hubby isn't going to touch my legs. I do it for me. To feel mildly human. I might have to try his razor though if it produces OMFG results! ;)

  5. Haha! Sorry laughing at the thought of JP with a hedgehog face, but not knowing why! Do I shave or do I wax? Or do I not care? Well, to be completely honest in this weather, I think of my hairy legs as a layer of lovely, warm, woolly insulation!! But, no, seriously, I shave. Waxed once, I would rather give birth! And I use OHs Gillette thingy too! Discovered that one years ago...oh, and I have 3 boys who also have the same thingys, so if I were inclined to shave that often in these artic conditions I have a selection to chose from!

  6. I'm embarassed to say that I rarely shave my legs after October - not until the weather starts improving around March at least. Y'see the hairs add some extra insulation, and as I only ever wear trousers or long skirts and knee length boots in winter, there seems to be little point in shaving my legs. And I'm single (perhaps because of my hairy legs?) so no man ever sees/feels them.

    And don't even get me started on bikini waxes!

  7. I shave! when I can be arsed!! I'm lazy in th ewinter when my legs are 'under wraps' as it were - in the summer I shave, wet shave is best but I have an electric razor for inbetween days when I'm in a hurry - I can use the loo and shave at the same time!! (TMI but us mummies have to multitask!)

    I'd love to wax but it brings me up in a rash and causes ingrowing hairs. Ditto the Epilator (bloody bloody painful too!)

    so yes a lovely hot bath and a wet shave! (when time allows)

  8. Shave, when I can be bothered. I can be very unsexy in winter. But hey if I was a man I'd have a beard as well I think.

  9. I am definitly a wax girl - as smooth as possible is my motto! but while I can cope with the legs, even the old bikini wax is fine by me I just can't get my head around having my underarms waxed like lots of Italians do - oh, and thanks but no thanks on the snow - I live in freaking Italy - at the seaside - we shouldn't see snow - so why are we in the middle of a bloody snow storm right now while my children and my husband are all travelling on motorways as I type (all separately too!!)

  10. Shave & have a fear of potential pain (yep, not even tried waxing). & husbands razors are fair game in my book too...

    Happy New Year


  11. Health and safety? That's complete bullshit. They are anti-baby nazis, I am afraid. You can take a baby to the salon I used to go to, no probs at all. However, I prefer the Braun Silk Epil - every other week at home. Smooooth.

    xx MM

  12. I'm a leg shaver - have no problem with it, except forgetting to do it. But wax for bikini line - shaving there is way too painful and stubbly. I only do it when the boys are at nursery or a babysitter.

  13. On a whim I bought a Epilator and after years of waxing wish someone had told me about them before. It is amazing, you just whizz up your legs and the hairs are pulled out with the same amount of pain as waxing. Regrowth is the same as waxing but as you can do it yourself with ease you can get the hairs as soon as they are long enough. Why did no one tell me about this before. You must try it.


    P.S I am not normally so shallow but feel woman-kind needs to know this information.

  14. i shave my legs and under arms whilst in the shower with one of those intuition razors for women. It does a good job and i can wash and shave in one session. So efficient lol!

  15. I waxed for a while, but generally it's shaving in a rush!

  16. I am such an un-hairy person I hardly even think about it. I shave under my arms about once every three or four weeks, (in the summer probably two to three just to be super groomed!). And believe me, I'm not walking around looking like ape-woman under there.
    I have never been able to wax because it takes off half my skin and I get a terrible reaction. I usually just shave in the shower, but I have to remember not to be washing my hair at the same time, otherwise the shampoo gets in my eyes and there have been some nasty consequences.
    Was this too much info?

  17. I got a wax once (is that even how you say it?) and was not impressed. She missed bits. It felt super smooth when I left, but within a couple of hours there was lots of stubble. I think I would probably require six months of regular waxing to get to the point where it all grows at the same rate. But don't have the money or time for that!

    Tried an epilator a while back (hmm, wonder if I still have it somewhere) and, ow, ow, ow, ow!

    So, I shave. Currently, using cheap crappy disposable razors to save money (oh, the joys of living with a Scot who has discovered we owe way too much money). Though currently is a little misleading, as I have not shaved since I was about 7 months pregnant. What? It's very cold at the moment. I will shave when I'm ready to have sex again - so, you know, maybe in 2011?

    I am unfortunate that I'm very, very hairy. I have to either shave every single day or once a week or less frequently. If I shave in between those times, I bleed copiously because the stubble pulls the follicle up with it, which then gets shorn with the hair. I end up looking like a very badly plucked chicken and smooth is certainly not a word to describe the result.

    I would really, really, really love to be someone who has smooth legs most of the time from whatever means. If someone finds a way, I would pay, well, no money whatsoever because that wouldn't be a valid expense, but if I won the lottery I'd pay thousands of pounds. Probably.

  18. Your post made me smile :o) I've got the 5 bladed Venus which is OK but I keep forgetting to change the blades... besides its winter right? no one can see under the thermal socks!!

  19. Ooh, interesting. I shave my legs but have my eyebrows waxed. I think I'd go back to leg waxing too if I could afford it. I have learnt never to go near eyebrows with a bic razor!!

  20. Oooooh no don't tell him,if he's anything like Mr R he'll go nuts. It blunts their razor (apparently) not that I've ever tried it (of course) and it could led to much blood (though I'd not know that you understand). I'm at the not caring stage at this point of the winder. Boots are the way to go til Spring.

  21. hmmm. not sure where my comment went. going to try again.

    reading about your husband's shaver made me laugh because i've been tempted to use my hubby's on my armpits many times. as for my legs, i've been blessed with a pair of non-hairy asian ones. i don't shave except in the summer time when i notice a couple longish strands on my knees.

  22. I discovered men's razors were better ages ago. I really don't know what the difference is or why women are fobbed off with something inferior. But then I have PCOS (polycystic ovaries syndrome) which results in rather more hair than a girl would generally like. And if I got waxed I'd probably have to go every week to keep on top of it.

  23. Top tip! Am off to try it. And boy, do I need some help. That razor needs to be on top form to deal with the rainforest of growth on my legs. But, I want to wear a skirt with tights and am horrified that the hair is clearly and heavily coming through the tights... a male razor is clearly required asap. x

  24. Sshhh... I've gone for the hairy option. Then again, hubbie is hairy too so I don't think he notices most of the time...

  25. I'm lucky I'm not very hairy. I had my legs waxed once and I think the hairs offered so little resistance they broke before the wax got anywhere near the roots. Total waste of time and money.
    I now have an epilator and that works perfectly.
    I made the mistake of shaving my legs last year, in the shower, with the 5 year old bic I use for my armpits. Not only did I cut my ankle - blood was pouring down the plughole - but also I now have a massive patch of psoriasis on my shin that itches like mad. I have a cream from my GP, but you can only use it on unbroken skin. Unfortunately I can't leave it alone long enough for it to heal to apply the cream. Perhaps I need scratch mitts?!

  26. I have to say, I'm a waxer through and through. Have been for the last, ooh, 16 years. And even when finances don't allow for a salon visit, I heat up my own hot wax and DIY. Amazingly it's actually less painful than in the salon. Yep - even in the bikini region. Sorry, was that too much information?? I have to admit though, after some brave initial attempts, I just haven't the patience to do my legs. It takes soooo long and the backs are never that satisfactory. I find little patches of bits I've missed for days afterwards. So I do try and squeeze a salon trip in for them. It's my one little luxury that I refuse to give up. Well, that and my highlights.

    But I must say, I'm impressed by the sound of the Gilette job. You should send this post to them and get them to send you half a dozen freebies, surely?!!

  27. Hello,
    I'm with Mamma Po. I've been a waxer for the last 20 years and absolutely will NOT under any circumstances go back to shaving. I am far less hairier then I was back then (thankgoodness).
    It is the one thing that I make no concession on and I am very POOR at the moment.

  28. i'm back again, a tag for you over at mine xxxx

  29. Isn't that one of the official benefits of winter - no one need ever know the hairy truth about one's limbs?!

  30. Me again, sorry you're getting a list of tags, as there's one over at mine too xx

  31. Have never waxed any part of me! Only use razors and not very often - but that's too much information...!!!

    CJ xx

  32. I used to treat myself to a monthly wax - legs, brazilian and eyebrows. I've had some really funny experiences in the waxing room. Once a novice ripped off the wax strip with such gusto it flew out the window onto an elderly lady walking in the high street below. LOL! Can't afford the wax so I've bought myself an epilator. IT is fabulous! I don't mind the pain, I once fell asleep during my Brazilian. Then again I recently had my face threaded and found that was delightfully painful. Just enough. Like a decent massage. But then maybe I'm weird.

  33. Michelleoui - yes I totally agree - I much preferred waxing too - and I was gutted when I was forced to give it up. I may go back to it one day, once the children have left home!

    Josie - Hee hee - oh you do so paint a wonderful picture of yourself. Ant must just be dribbling with desire!! ;-) But yes, what i wouldn't pay for a monthly MOT as well - imagine if we were rich - just how fabulous we could look?! Hmmmm....

    Glowstars - yep, having read all the comments I would say that an epilator is the way to go. Don't mind the pain - you kind of get used to it don't you? Definitely something to think about next time I'm in Boots.

    Karin - You know I think the idea of waxing is sometimes far worse than the reality. And you kind of get used to the pain! But yes, I hate the hair too. Having said that, if my husband's away working then, I do tend to leave it a tad longer!

    Brighton Mum - ooh you lucky thing - so many men razors lying around - I'm not surprised you discovered them already - but why does no one tell you? I'd never even thought of using them before. But, obviously now I know I'm shouting it loud and proud! But waxing worse than giving birth??? Oh Karen, no...rose-coloured spectacles??

  34. notSupermum - I know - you could be right - I could definitely do with another layer of insulation at the moment. It's bloody freezing. But sometimes, if I haven't de-haired and I have tights on, you can still see them peeping through. Not a good look! Need thicker tights I think.

    tattooed - Yep I'm with you on the wet shave - that's what I do now. A lovely long bath in the evening when the children are in bed and husband's razor. Think I need to get my own now...

    Mwa - I know - it must be even worse for men having to shave their face every day - I think I'd have a beard too!

    privateblog/Kathryn - Bloody snow - it's driving me only a little bit mad! thanksfully the children are back at school and nursery today so I have a spare second to reply to comments. But yes, definitely the smoother the better - just which way to achieve that with the least amount of fuss?!

    Lydia - Happy New Year to you lovely lady. Yep, husband's razors are definitely game - just wish I had thought of it sooner!

  35. Met Mum - I know - you're so right - I was completely furious at the time and decided that I would never go back. But when hubby bought me a massage voucher, I, er quickly changed my mind! But yes, epilator is beginning to sound like a good option. Shall definitely try...

    Nappy Valley - Yep, shaving the bikini line definitely isn't ideal - it's just when to find the time to wax? Leaving until isn't ideal either, but then I guess nothing is with small children!

    Charlotte - you're right - womankind does need to know this info. Thanks sweetie. You have inspired me to go out and get an epilator. Will let you know the results x

    Amy - yep, I guess you must have sussed it all by now because with your brood efficiency is a need! And thanks for the tag - I think I've popped over already xx

    Ang - If I shave while I'm in a rush I always end up cutting myself. I try to do it when the kiddies are in bed so I have some time. Otherwise results are disastrous!

  36. Expat Mum - Never TMI for me!! (except perhaps the bit where you tell me that you're not hairy at all). Yes, not sure I needed to hear that - I'm way too jealous now! You lucky lady - what I wouldn't give to be like that (I am, erm, not like that at all)!!

    Tasha - I have a friend who had lasered her legs and bikini line since she first started and she never does them now - imagine that? If only we'd known (oh yes, and had the money for it too). It's such a total pain. But yes, it's never an easy task, whichever way you choose to do it. But ouch to disposable razors - I always end up cutting myself with them...

    Slim Lens - Glad I made you smile! And yes, it is Winter, so at least we all have excuses for being a bunch of gorilas! But yes, I also forget to change the blades, which is probably why they're so crap. Guess when you're using it on your face (hubby, not me just in case you were wondering), you can't really afford to use blunt blades.

    Rosie - Oh you didn't did you? Go near your eyebrows with a razor? Whatever posessed you crazy lady? Funny though. Yes, I have a friend who waxes her eyebrows and she swears by it. Can't say I've tried, but I may one day...I'd definitely keep waxing if I had the time and money.

    Reasons - No of course you haven't tried sweetie!! Bit late for not telling hubby, unfortunately - he reads the blog! And the first thing he did when he read the post was bellow from another room. Games up I'm afraid...

  37. SAHM-I-AM - Oh you lucky thing - what I wouldn't give to have hairless legs - wonderful. But yes, do try hubby's razor on your under arms - i promise it will work wonders. Just don't tell him!!

    JK - Ooh you already know - clever lady. Yes, why don't they tell us? We're not all hairless lovlies you know? And yes, I have PCO's too - so also have rather a lot of hair to remove ;-)

    BiB - Ooh how exciting - I love it when someone takes my advice (don't love it so much obviously if they don't then agree)!! But do let me know how you get on. I hope your legs and smooth and silky and you can wear those tights xx

    Catharine - It's ok darling I won't tell anyone!! Anyway, I think you're probably wise. In this weather we could all do with an extra layer of insulation!

    Sandy - Oh you're so right - disposable razors are rubbish - every time I use them (and I never learn it seems) I end up cutting myself. Yep, definitely seems like an epilator is the way to go though. I think I may just try it.

  38. Mamma Po - Oh I was like you - really I was. Never shaved, always waxed, etc, but then that bloomin' salon wouldn't let me come in with a baby and I was given no other choice. If I remember rightly, I had a 'do' to go to, so I couldn't wait until someone was free for a spot of babsitting. Damn shame. All those years of waxing wasted!

    Lulu - Oh I know - I wish I'd either found another salon that would have admitted baby, or just held off, but as I said to Mamma Po above, I think I had a 'do' to go to, so my legs needed to be de-haired sharpish. Such a shame. I was a die hard waxer too!

    Hot Cross - Well yes, except when even your children wince when they touch your legs - I only do it for them of course!

    Brighton Mum - got your tag sweetie. Thanks xx

    CJ - Oh I wish I could get away with not doing it too often! But maybe the Farmer likes his ladies hairy!! xx

    Vegemite - No I'm with you - I totally get that the pain is ok - almost enjoyable!! And yes, I never found the waxing too painful, but maybe there was so much hair that by the end I was just numb from it all! And yes, having read all the comments I would say the epilator is the way to go. I'm definitely going to invest in one.

  39. I hadn't realised that men's razors were such a secret ... have been 'borrowing' my Mr's for years

  40. Muddling - So sorry for my ridiculously late reply to your comment - but thanks, yes men's razors are a huuuuge secret - which is why I felt I had to bring it to the attention of the blogging world!! Wish I'd known about it a few years ago!

  41. Well, this made for an interesting read.

    I didn't understand your statement "the moment you've picked up that razor, all the years of waxing benefits are undone in an instant". I'm a razor girl myself, and I have to say that if your statement is true, then I'm even more put of waxing than ever. Seems like it might be a long-term commitment.